Pleasure Island News and Events

Carolina Beach Planning Department to Host Community Discussion – The Town of Carolina Beach wishes to extend an open invitation to participate in a discussion about allowances and changes to the Town’s sign regulations with the goal of enhancing economic development while preserving community appearance. Any and all signs will be on the table for discussion including but not limited to permanent signs, temporary signs and any other sign not now displayed inCarolina Beach. Members of the Planning and Zoning Commission, the Business and Economic Development Committee and the Chamber of Commerce are encouraged to attend. This informal meeting will be held on February 4, 2010 at 6:00 p.m., in the Police Training Room of Town Hall. Should there be any questions, please contact Gary Ferguson at (910) 458-2986.

Cheer on your Team during the Super Bowl at Tangerine Caribbean Grill – On February 7th, Tangerine will be offering Super Bowl Specials as you cheer your on your team in their quest for the coveted Lombardi Trophy. Specials include Chili Bowls, Blackened Ribeye Sandwiches, Pulled Pork Sandwiches, $.40 wings, Personal Pan Pizzas, Nachos, Quesadillas, Burgers, Seafood Tacos and Classic Fish Fry Platters. All of these items are also available to go along with their full menu. Additionally, Tangerine’s will be offering a variety of drink specials. Tangerine Caribbean Grill is located at 300 N. Lake Park Boulevard in Carolina Beach. www.tangerinegrille.com

Lazy Pirate Gears Up for Super Bowl – Celebrate the Super Bowl at The Lazy Pirate as they host the 1st Annual Super Bowl Pig Pickin’ Party. The Lazy Pirate will offer free food and prizes and an appearance will be made by the Miller Girls. The Lazy Pirate also offers the largest flat screen televisions on the Island. They are located at 701 N. Lake Park Boulevard next to the Drifter’s Reef Motel. For more information contact them at (910) 458-5414 ext. 505.

Special Olympics Gears up for their Annual Polar Plunge – This year’s Special Olympics Polar Plunge will be held on Saturday, February 20th at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk next to the Courtyard Marriott. Come take a chilling plunge into the Atlantic Ocean to support the Special Olympics of New Hanover County. Join them for an afternoon of live music, art, food, a silent auction, classic car show and much, much more. In order to plunge, you must raise a minimum of $50.00 (or $30 for students with proper ID). To request a brochure or for more information please email to polarplunge@plungenhc.com or call (910) 341-5876.

On-Line registration is available for this year’s Lo-Tide Run – This year’s 6th Annual Steve Haydu St. Patrick’s Day Lo-Tide Run is scheduled for March 13th at 9:00 a.m. On-line registration is now available through the website at www.lotiderun.org. While on-line registration is preferred, mail-in registration forms will be available for download on the website as well as distributed to local businesses.

14th Annual Pleasure Island Chowder Cook Off Applicants being Accepted – On April 17th, chefs from restaurants on Pleasure Island and surrounding communities gather on Pleasure Islandfor our famous Chowder Cook Off. This wonderful, daylong event includes live music, fun for the kids and, of course, great food. If your business is interested in competing in this year’s Cook Off, please contact the Chamber offices for an application or visit our website atwww.pleasureislandnc.org.

Kure Beach Street Festival to be Held on April 24, 2010 – The annual Kure Beach Street Festival is rapidly becoming one of the town’s “rites of spring”. This year the festival will again be held on the last Saturday in April. This will be the fourth annual street festival and it promises to be bigger and better than ever. So, please mark your calendars and plan your calendars and plan on enjoying a day filled with old-fashioned family fun. Free entertainment will include three live bands, recorded music, a kid’s korner; inflatable bounce castles and a car show featuring some of the Sun Coast Cruisers finest award winners. The festivities will start at 11:00 a.m. on K Avenuein front of the Kure Beach Pier. Stay tuned for more details as the festival approaches.www.townofkurebeach.org

Real Estate and Weather – last week there were 24 new listings, 2 under contract, and 5 sold on Pleasure Island.  The weather will be rainy tomorrow, partly sunny on Sunday and rain off and on throughout the week with chilly temperatures.


Carolina Beach and Kure Beach News and Events

Check out the area events for Carolina & Kure Beach for the month of January!

American Legion Post 129 offers “Souper Saturday” – On January 16th from 5:00-7:00 p.m., the American Legion Post 129 will offer 5 varieties of hot, homemade soup and bread, crackers, croutons & dessert. Larger bowls are still only $3.00 a bowl. The American Legion is located at 1500 Bridge Barrier Road (behind Food Lion) in Carolina Beach.

Bingo Bash is Back at the Katie B. Hines Center – On the third Saturday of each month, head out to the K.B. Hines Senior Center for Bingo Bash. There are 17 games with a pot totaling $2500.00. Doors open at 9:30 a.m. and the games start at 11:00. All games are included in the pack. Seating is limited however so it is a first come-first serve basis. There is also free coffee and popcorn for the bingo participants. The K.B. Hines Senior Center is located at 308 Cape Fear Boulevard. For more information, please call Dee at 458-6609 or 619-2100.

Fort Fisher State Historic Site to hold 145th Anniversary Event – On Sunday, January 17th, the Fort Fisher State Historic Site will hold their 145th Anniversary Event. A battle scenario, lantern light tours, and evening firing of the site’s 32-pound rifled and banded cannon will also highlight this anniversary program. Visitors can see artillery and infantry demonstrations and walk through Union and Confederate camps established on the fort’s grounds. There will also be musical performances in the activity tent. The schedule of events that day is:

11:00 a.m. Carolina Fifes and Drums

11:30 a.m. Huckleberry Bros.

12:00 p.m. John Golden

12:30 p.m. Book talk and signings by Col. Jack Travis

2:00 p.m. Battle Scenario

For more information please visit www.nchistoricsites.org

NC Aquarium Offers Free Day – The North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher will celebrate the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday by waiving admission fees on Monday, January 18th. Need something to do with the kids while they are out of school? Sign them up for AquaCamp! From 8:30 – 3:00, children ages 5-10 can get an up close look at reptiles and animals including turtles, salamanders and alligators. In this session, campers will learn about the similarities and differences between these two types of animals. There will be live animal presentations and more. Snacks are provided but children will need to bring a sack lunch. Cost for the AquaCamp is $40.00 and pre-registration is required and can be made by calling (910) 458-7468. www.ncaquariums.com

Special Olympics Gears up for their Annual Polar Plunge – This year’s Special Olympics Polar Plunge will be held on Saturday, February 20th at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk next to the Courtyard Marriott. Come take a chilling plunge into the Atlantic Ocean to support the Special Olympics of New Hanover County. Join them for an afternoon of live music, art, food, a silent auction, classic car show and much, much more. In order to plunge, you must raise a minimum of $50.00 (or $30 for students with proper ID). To request a brochure or for more information please email to polarplunge@plungenhc.com or call (910) 341-5876.

On-Line registration is available for this year’s Lo-Tide Run – This year’s 6th Annual Steve Haydu St. Patrick’s Day Lo-Tide Run is scheduled for March 13th at 9:00 a.m. On-line registration is now available through the website at www.lotiderun.org. While on-line registration is preferred, mail-in registration forms will be available for download on the website as well as distributed to local businesses.

Snow’s Cut Media is Alive and Well – Rumors are running rampant on the Island that Snow’s Cut Media is out of business. Janet Hoffer would like to set the record straight. On January 8th of this year, Snow’s Cut Media announced the discontinuation of the monthly publication, Snow’s Cut Monthly. However, Snow’s Cut Media also produces the Pleasure Island Vacation Guide, now in its 4th year, and the Vacation Coupons Book, in its 7th year. The Company is still moving forward with great zeal on these publications and both will be on news stands by early May. For a preview of the online tour guide for these great publications, please visit www.pleasureislandvacationguide.com orwww.vacationsouponsbook.com. Questions may also be directed to Snow’s Cut Media’s office at (910) 458-0120.

Real Estate and Weather – Pleasure Island had 22 new listings, 5 pending sales, and 1 closed sale last week.  We’ve had some very cold weather; however it is warming up nicely with a lot of sunshine. Spring is not far off.


Pleasure Island News and Updates

Have coffee with Kure Beach Mayor Lambeth on Saturdays from 9:00am to 11:00am and discuss any topic you like.  Meetings held at Kure Beach Town Hall.

Smoking Law in effect as of January 2nd there is no smoking in bars or restaurants.  You can now feel free to take a deep breath while eating dinner.

There has been a big gain in existing home sales as buyers respond to tax credit – especially with the extension of the tax credit until April and also the $6500 tax credit to existing home owners.

The Pleasure Island office had 8 new listings and 4 under contract last week.

The weather remains cold through Tuesday and then we should see temperatures in the 50’s.  That will feel warm compared to what we’ve been feeling.

Pleasure Island is always a great place to come and visit even when it is cold – there are plenty of great restaurants and places to shop.


Supply and Demand in Real Estate

The real estate market, like other markets, is driven by the economic principle of supply and demand.

Simply put, the absorption rate is the measure of today’s housing, or demand, versus how many months will it take to absorb the current supply of inventory.

The formula uses the past 12 months of unit sales to establish how many houses are selling each month on average, divided into the existing inventory to calculate the months of supply available.

In real estate it is generally thought to be a balanced market when there are 5-6 months of inventory on the market. A key point to keep in mind: fewer months of supply result in a seller’s market and puts pressure on prices to increase. Higher months of supply result in a buyer’s market and puts pressure on prices to fall.

A seller’s market was evident locally, in the period of 2000-2006 as demand was high and supply was low. During this period of time the New Hanover County market was operating as a seller’s market with 1-2 months of supply at its peak which occurred in the first quarter 2006. By late 2006-2007, inventories rose to seven months of supply, or a balanced market; and since 2008 the market has become a buyer’s market with current inventories running around a 16 month supply.

Within New Hanover County the absorption rate varies by location. In the Ogden/Porters Neck, Castle Hayne and Myrtle Grove/Monkey Junction areas housing inventory is turning more quickly based in part on the lower average price points and the positive effect that the first time home buyers tax credits had in 2008. Other areas like Wrightsville Beach, Pleasure Island and parts of downtown Wilmington show a higher inventory based in part on the higher average price points of those locations which at present are turning slower.

The positive effect of the tax credits continues into 2010. The first time home buyers will benefit from the $8,000 tax credit on their purchases that most affect the $280,000 and lower purchase price points. Additionally in 2010 existing homeowners can benefit for tax credits up to $6,500 on purchases at price points of $800,000 or less. (Contact your Realtor to understand how these benefits may affect your purchase decisions.)

Buyers are coming back to the market attracted by an abundant selection, value and historically low interest rates.

With current levels of inventory, selection has never been better.

Values are wonderful. Value is determined by condition, price and location of product. As always, the properties that sell the quickest are those that are the best value to buyers.

Interest rates are at historical lows and yes, banks and mortgage companies are lending money. Generally today’s lending market requires that you put some money down and qualifying has been tightened to eliminate the aggressive hybrid sub prime lending of the past few years which included an abundance of 100 percent loans and low documentation requirements. Today’s interest rates are being artificially held low by the current policies of the federal government. It is generally believed that these rates can not last long term and there is much more pressure for rates to increase than stay at these low levels.

The effect of interest rates has a bigger effect on a buyer’s purchase decision than purchase price. A quarter of a percent increase in interest rates can eat up quickly a reduction in purchase price.

Based on all these factors, now is an excellent time to buy. I think we have all had an experience personally or had someone close to us experience a situation in which the memory is, “I could have purchased that property in _____ for only $_____.” Some will be talking about 2010 in that way 10 years from now.

 

Today’s sellers are divided into two groups:

Group one is those individuals that want or need to move and will price their homes aggressively to sell while taking advantage of this same buyer’s market to purchase their next home. As long as you are staying in the market, there is very little reason to not be in the home you want or need.

The second group of sellers will be those that stay in a location and wait for the market to return to the peaks of 2005-2006. Increasingly financial resources are calling for a slow but steady recovery. The forecasted recovery for North Carolina ranges in time from 2014-2017. Several national sources expect the recovery to take twice the length of time as the decline. If we bottom out in mid 2010 then the projected recovery fits the range cited above.

Just as so many other financial decisions, too many purchasers miss an opportunity by trying to time the absolute bottom of the market. Real estate is best considered as a long term investment and on the North Carolina coast the future looks bright. Last year, Senator Richard Burr shared with local Wilmington business leaders that as the federal government looked at the long term need of infrastructure by state, that population growth predictions called for a 50-plus percent growth in the population of North Carolina by the early 2020s.

The growth in North Carolina comes from the recognized superior quality of life factors that North Carolina offers such as climate and cost of living.

Another significant factor for North Carolina growth comes from the strength of secondary education in North Carolina’s universities, colleges and community college system. North Carolina is second only to California in the number of graduates each year. The students that come to the state often don’t want to leave, creating an intellectual capital that attracts business and industry.

All said and done, the recent events in the real estate market seem to be short term in nature, while the long term future looks bright.

Article by Chris Livengood, VP of Sales at Intracoastal Realty